Boxing Premier

Premier Boxing finally made its way onto network television and the last time boxing was this accessible was over thirty years ago. Leading the broadcast was two of the best in Al Michaels and Marv Alberts. And now, boxing could be making a late-round comeback with the best class of boxers in decades. And they are mostly in the welterweight division.

The broadcast started things off with Adrien “The Problem” Broner going up against John “The Gladiator” Molina Jr.. And you could almost hear the ratings plummet. Broner is a brash fighter who doesn’t usually mince words pre-fight or post but it seems that the networks managed to keep his banter to a minimum. Not good for a fighter who makes his living that way. Both men matched up well and the pro-Molina crowd expected things to get off to a fast start but it took a full three rounds to see either fighter throw any punches. Broner, known as much for his in ring jawing as he is for his outside-the-ring antics, could be heard throughout the bout urging his opponent to “hit me”. At one point, with both fighters tied up and against the ropes, Broner made a gesture to the crowd as if to say “what is this?”. Fight fans had to be wondering the same. At the end, the decision was in favor of Broner but not because of anything he did. Except for staying busy and a consistent onslaught of soft jabs, Broner won the match because Molina refused to throw any punches. This had to disappoint promoter Al Haymon who, I’m assuming, chose Molina for this bout because of the Molina-Mathysse fight last year.

The second (and last) fight on the card Saturday night was one of the best bouts in a long time. Keith “One Time” Thurman against “Ghost” Guererro. “Ghost”, famous for his loss against Mayweather Jr., and Thurman, famous for not letting his last five opponents out of the fourth round, did not disappoint. Thurman came out on the offensive early, and throughout gave the brutally honest crowd what they came to see. At the end of the seventh round with Guererro close to being done for the night came back and was scoring often. But it simply wasn’t enough and Thurman got the decision.

The broadcast ended with sizzle on a very high note.

This is the way (my opinion) that boxing survives. At the height of boxing in the cable expansion era, promoters left network television and fans of the sweet-science inevitably lost touch with the sport. But now with many more outlets, the sport has risen once again to the mainstream. But they (boxing executives) can’t again take the sport away. Besides, where would they go?

This is all good promotion not only for stars of the sport on the rise but for the fight everyone has been waiting to see- Mayweather/Pacquiao. If everyone plays their respective cards right you could see the sport of boxing make a major comeback. This time for good.

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